Sunday, January 31, 2016

One Thing is Needful: Week Five - Friends and Community

I had just gotten married and moved away from home for the first time.  I'd moved from Alabama to Louisiana and the only person I knew there was my husband.  We’d been living in Louisiana about 3 months when we visited a church and we were invited back to a deacon’s house for lunch.    We had a wonderful lunch with some precious people.  The next week I received a thank you note from the deacon’s wife thanking US for having lunch with THEM!  Inside the note she had this quote:

I loved it and still have the card today.  That simple gesture of inviting us over for lunch that day, completely changed my life for the next five years (and even beyond).  The families we had lunch with that day became some very close friends.  As a matter of fact, over the next five years they became our family!  I couldn’t imagine the time I spent in Louisiana without them.    

Fast forward about twelve years and six kids later and here we are at the beach this past summer with some of them!  I've often thought what if she hadn't taken the time and effort to open up her home and her family to us - strangers at that time.  How different our lives might have been!

I believe God puts friends in our lives at certain times to fulfill a purpose.  As I began to write this post, I looked back and can see how God placed certain people in my life.  During my school years, He gave me several friends a few of whom I still stay in touch.  Then as I was married and moved to Louisiana, the families I mentioned above were placed in our path.  Then came time to start our family and God placed directly in my path another friend He knew I needed during these crazy years!  
God doesn't intend for us to have to walk through this life alone.  He gives us friends to strengthen, encourage, and help us, and just to have some fun along the way! 
"A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly:  and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother."  Proverbs 13:24
Christ wants to be our friend AND he wants us to have friends.  Our relationships with our friends are once again directly related to our friendship with Christ.   We're going to be looking at some scripture this week and discussing what type of friend Jesus was: loving, compassionate, humble, supporting, and willing to sacrifice, even to the point of death.  There is no better friend than Christ himself.  When we are as close to him as possible, then we have what we need to be a better friend to those around us.
Sometimes being a good friend means being selfless and laying aside some of our own desires to make time for those around us.  Especially, in the season of life where I am, it's easy to get so caught up in my immediate family and miss what's going on around me.  I love my husband and of course he is one of my dearest friends, but there are some things I'd just rather talk to a girl friend about!  I love my kids too, but one day they'll be grown and have their own friends and then where will that leave me? 
As we go throughout this week may we look at the ones God has placed in our paths.  Maybe they are old friends in which we need to reconnect.  Maybe they are new friends, we don't even know yet but God has placed them in our path for a purpose this very week.  May we draw closer to Him, slow down, and take the time to be friendly. 

1 comment:

  1. The perspective you have pointed out this morning is so true and such a blessing. I have people come and go out of my life for one reason or another. I never considered that the time we had together was all the time God had planned. Then there are people in my life that are still a part of my life today and God knows that I need them to stick around a while. Thanks again Sis. Anna. Very nice wake up call this morning!! Love you and I appreciate the time that you put in for this Bible study.